“Black Monday” became “Wait ‘Til Tuesday” at the Indianapolis Colts complex.
National and local media arrived early Monday to await the anticipated announcement that Chuck Pagano would not be retained as head coach. During the wait, the locker room was opened for player interviews. One by one, Colts players professed their affinity for their coach, insisted they didn’t know what was happening, then packed up their locker contents in garbage bags and went home.
Colts owner Jim Irsay was seen arriving around 2 p.m. A much-anticipated meeting with Pagano was scheduled for 3 p.m.
The wait continued.
A short time after 5 p.m., a media relations spokesman announced there wouldn’t be a press conference or any statement made on Monday. An advisory update will be sent out to the media on Tuesday.
What that means for Pagano is anyone’s guess. Widespread speculation had the fourth-year coach gone after an 8-8 season fell far short of expectations. If true, why the wait?
What possible explanation could there be for this meeting lasting so long that the decision would need to be put off for at least one more day?
Is Irsay having second thoughts about Pagano?
Is Pagano “fighting his ass off” to keep his job, as he said recently, and is making a strong case?
Is Irsay trying to determine if Pagano and general manager Ryan Grigson can somehow co-exist, if both return?
Pagano’s contract expires at the end of this NFL calendar year in March. If the Colts intended to give him an extension, why wouldn’t that have happened before now? If Irsay planned to keep his coach all along, wouldn’t he have secured Pagano to a long-term extension before this season ended?
After a long day with no new news, the only summation became: “Stay tuned.”
Phillip B. Wilson also can be found on Facebook and Google+.